THOMAS KERVIN PHOTO Port Hardy council declined to amend the district’s cannabis bylaw so that a company could open up a shop in the Thunderbird Mall.

Council says no to pot shop in Thunderbird Mall in Port Hardy

Third pot shop wants to open in Port Hardy, but is turned down by council due to bylaw issues.

It was a no from Port Hardy council when it came to a recreational cannabis shop wanting to open in the Thunderbird Mall.

Port Cannabis Co., with assistance from National Access Cannabis, had submitted an application to the Province of British Columbia to open a recreational cannabis shop in the Thunderbird Mall, but due to the location’s close proximity to North Island College (NIC), the business needed council to amend its bylaw.

“In addition to elementary and secondary school, the definition of ‘Education Services’, as set forth by the District of Port Hardy in the Bylaw 1010-20143, includes post-secondary institutions, administrative offices and maintenance and storage facilities,” wrote Sherman Leung, Direct of Operations, B.C. “While we understand that the bylaw and associated setbacks are in place to ensure the safety of the general public, especially the youth, we feel this definition may be unnecessarily broad regarding its application to the location of recreational cannabis stores.”

Leung continued, noting the company wanted council to “consider narrowing the definition to encompass elementary and secondary schools.”

He added they have obtained a letter from NIC, in which the college states they “do not object to this business moving into the mall providing the business meets the stringent regulatory framework established by the City of Port Hardy and all other regulatory bodies.”

Council ultimately voted to not amend the bylaw, thus stopping the company from being able to open a recreational cannabis shop in the Thunderbird Mall.

Port Hardy Mayor Dennis Dugas noted while the business talked to NIC and there were no issues there, they didn’t contact the Sacred Wolf Friendship Centre, “who have a lot of programs for children and young adults.”

He added council went and talked about the issue with Sacred Wolf “and they weren’t aware of the situation, so we discussed it and we decided that because of the programs being offered at Sacred Wolf, that it would be better to leave the bylaw as it is.”


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